We Welcome the World

Welcome to the 2017 World Rowing Championships, Sarasota-Bradenton.

This fall, from September 23-October 1, 1,700 athletes and thousands of spectators from more than 60 countries will descend on “America’s Course,” Nathan Benderson Park in beautiful Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida. The Local Organizing Committee and its chairmen can’t wait to welcome the world to paradise.

July 10, 2013


Dear Mr. Smith,

I am pleased to voice my support for Sarasota County’s bid to host the 2017 World Rowing Championships.

The United States would be honored to host the World Rowing Championships for the first time in 23 years. Sarasota County would be thrilled to share its beautiful and expansive beaches with the athletes, and would provide a wonderful, unique experience for each of the 42,000 attendees.

During my tenure as President, my family and I have remained dedicated to physical fitness. The First Lady is working to improve children’s health by encouraging young people to get active, and I have emphasized the importance of healthy living by appointing a Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. Selecting our Nation to host this important rowing event will promote physical fitness and bolster participation in the sport of rowing.

I strongly support Sarasota County’s bid, and I urge the International Rowing Federation to approve it.


Barack Obama


“I am honored to serve as the honorary chair of the 2017 World Rowing Championships. This event will bring new visitors to our region, showcase a world-class sporting venue, and help boost the economy. I look forward to playing a small role in this event.”

-Congressman Vern Buchanan

R-Fla., Honorary Chair


“This event will showcase our world class location and the incredible rowing facility at Nathan Benderson Park to thousands of premier athletes, sponsors and attendees. The economic development that this will provide to our area will be substantial, as will the long term impact in reinforcing our area as a premier, international sports destination.”

-Ed Chiles

CEO, The Chiles Group

Event Co-Chair

“My family and PGT have been involved in the sports industry for a long time. It’s an honor to be a part of this particular sporting event.”

-Rod Hershberger

President and CEO, PGT Industries

Event Co-Chair